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3 Best Hiking and Nature Trails in Big Sur, California

Fill your lungs with some cool, fresh ocean air!

 Natalie Kowalewski
NatalieTravel Guide
3 Best Hiking and Nature Trails in Big Sur, California

Start your day by embarking on scenic hikes along the rugged coastline, where breathtaking views and invigorating sea breezes await. Don't miss the opportunity to visit the seal-spotted coastlines near Wander Big Sur Coast too.

So, lace up your hiking boots, grab your binoculars, and get ready to immerse yourself in the outdoor wonders that await you. Here are our top choices in hiking and nature trails in Big Sur, California!

Elephant Seal Vista Point

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Photo courtesy of The Maritime Mammal Center

This rugged coastal stretch serves as a sanctuary for northern elephant seals. As you approach the sandy shores, you'll be greeted by the sight of massive marine mammals basking lazily on the beach. Observing them in their natural habitat is an experience like no other.

Tip: The best time to see seals is late-November through early March as this is peak mating and birthing season. For more information about the seals or details about the nearby gift shop, check out the non-profit organization, Friends of the Elephant Seal.

Fiscalini Ranch Preserve and Moonstone Beach

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Photo courtesy of Friends of the Fiscalini Ranch Preserve

The 437-acre Fiscalini Ranch Preserve offers a captivating blend of scenic beauty and diverse ecosystems, making it a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. The network of well-maintained trails guides you through this natural paradise.

Keep an eye out for an array of bird species that inhabit the area. As you wander through the trails, you'll encounter enchanting groves of Monterey pines and oak woodlands. 

When you’re done, just head down the road to Moonstone Beach. True to its name, it is renowned for its abundant supply of smooth, glistening moonstones scattered across the shore. Take a leisurely stroll along the coastal boardwalk.

The rhythmic sound of crashing waves and the salty scent of the ocean create a serene atmosphere. Keep your eyes peeled for vibrant tide pools teeming with fascinating marine life, and if you're lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of dolphins playing in the surf or sea otters frolicking in the kelp forests. 

Salmon Creek Falls Trail

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Photo courtesy of Central Coast Hiker/AllTrails

This easy, scenic trail takes you on a captivating journey through a lush forest, leading to the breathtaking Salmon Creek Falls. The trail is open year-round and is beautiful to visit anytime, although it gets busy during the warmer months. Dogs are welcome but must be on a leash.


There's no better way to end a magical day of hiking than by sitting by the fire and enjoying the gorgeous views of the coast with a glass of wine. You can do that and more at Wander Big Sur Coast.

Our concierge desk is on standby for any questions you might have. See you soon!

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